The American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit today challenging the constitutionality of the Trump administration’s prohibition on transgender military service members. In a legal complaint, the civil-rights group says banning transgender individuals from serving in the military violates the U.S. Constitution’s guarantee of equal protection and due process. It accuses Trump of illegally singling out transgender men and women based on “myths and stereotypes” about an already-disadvantaged group.
Josh Block, an ACLU senior staff attorney, released the following statement:
“Each and every claim made by the President Trump to justify this ban can be easily debunked by the conclusions drawn from the Department of Defense’s own review process. Allowing men and women who are transgender to serve openly and providing them with necessary health care does nothing to harm military readiness or unit cohesion. Men and women who are transgender with the courage and capacity to serve deserve more from their commander-in-chief.”
Trump abruptly announced the ban on Twitter a little over a month ago. The ACLU’s lawsuit names the president and several members of his administration, including Defense Secretary James Mattis. You can read the full legal complaint here.